Swampscott Middle School seventh-graders Felix Luebken and Maddy Chambers have at least two things in common.
One: They count math as their favorite subject.
Two: They were awarded December Student of the Month plaques.
Well, Maddy seems quieter than Felix.
She likes challenges — figuring things out on her own.
She likes dance. Especially jazz. She studies at Donna's Dance Studio in Lynn.
And she has been going to Swampscott schools all along.
Felix is very outgoing. He speaks Chinese, German and English. And humor.
He likes to tell jokes.
And he came to town from China — Shanghai — just this year.
It was a big change.
"It was harder to make friends," he said.
There are differences in the how you connect with people, at least when it comes to humor, he said.
"If you tell jokes, they aren't really ironic in China," he said.
They do not know each other well but Maddy said Felix is nice kid, and he's funny.
Felix said Maddy is a nice kid.
They are both in the Explorer Team B group and were nominated for the award by six teachers.
Principal Brian Murphy said the teachers recognized that Maddy and Felix work diligently in all subjects and treat fellow students well.
The monthly award recognizes effort and good judgement — doing the right thing and, thereby, setting a good example.
The contest is sponsored by Crown Trophy of Peabody, which provides the engraved plaques.
The company, owned by the principal's brother, does the same for other North Shore schools, sponsoring student of the month awards by providing engraved plaques.